When the announcement of George Michael’s death circulated on Christmas Day in 2016 it was greeted with an air of disbelief: the singer/songwriter and producer was only 53. But it was true, and the world mourned the passing of a hugely talented artist with a beautiful, soulful voice. Michael was a pop star with a social conscience who did a lot of work for charity and to further the cause of sexual rights and education.
Michael shot to fame as part of the ultimate 80s pop duo Wham! and remained in the spotlight – for better and worse – until the end of 2016. Wham! split but Michael enjoyed a hugely successful solo career, working with some of the biggest names in music. He was sometimes controversial, and he fell foul of the law on a number of occasions, but he will be remembered for ever for his music and charitable work. His most famous songs were with Wham! and as a solo artist, and he collaborated with such musical royalty as Elton John, Aretha Franklin, Band Aid, Queen, Mary J. Blige, Whitney Houston, Paul McCartney and Beyoncé – and more.
David Nolan is an author, television producer and university lecturer, specializing in music and popular culture. Previous books have included works on Ed Sheeran, Emeli Sande and Jake Bugg.